The Left learned some lessons from the radicalism of the 1960s when their political agenda failed to accomplish their stated goals. Their radical agenda was shot down politically because the majority of Americans still retained a remnant of the older Christian worldview. The Left knew it would be necessary to capture those institutions that shape and mold children who will one day become leaders. Once the heart and mind are captured, everything else follows, including politics. This is a major tactical maneuver that most on the Right did not understand.
Antonio Gramsci’s philosophy for cultural and social change was the model for the new Leftists. Gramsci (1891–1937) considered Christianity to be the “force binding all the classes — peasants and workers and princes priests and popes and all the rest besides, into a single, homogeneous culture. It was specifically Christian culture, in which individual men and women understood that the most important things about human life transcend the material conditions in which they lived out their mortal lives.”
Gramsci broke with Marx and Lenin’s belief that the masses would rise up and overthrow the ruling “superstructure.” (Too many conservatives and libertarians believe the same thing today.)
Perceptively, Gramsci realized that in the long run what people did not ultimately believe in they would not fight for. Was Gramsci right? “The only Marxist state that existed” in Gramsci’s day “was imposed and maintained by force and by terrorist policies that duplicated and even exceeded the worst facets of Mussolini’s Fascism.”
The building of the Berlin Wall was the most visible evidence of Gramsci’s critique of traditional Marxism. Walls had to be built to keep people from escaping the “Workers’ Paradise.” Today, because yesterday’s liberals followed Gramsci’s methodology, not a shot was fired or a wall built to bring Marxism to America. Nearly half of America’s population have embraced the “worker’s paradise” — other people work so they can enjoy paradise.
Gramsci began his re-imaging of Marxism by dropping the harsh slogans. “It wouldn’t do to rant about ‘revolution’ and ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’ and the ‘Workers’ Paradise.’”
Instead, Marxism would have to put on a new face and talk about “national consensus,” “national unity,” and “national pacification.” Sound familiar? The democratic process rather than revolution would be used to bring about the necessary changes.
At first, pluralism would be promoted and defended. Further, Marxists would join with other oppressed groups — even if they did not share Marxist ideals—to create a unified coalition of voting power. After building their coalition “they must enter into every civil, cultural and political activity in every nation, patiently leavening them all as thoroughly as yeast leavens bread.”
Even after all of these successes, Gramsci still understood that Christianity remained his biggest obstacle in achieving his newly formulated Marxist goals. He had to strip the mind of any notion of the transcendent — “that there is nothing beyond the matter of this universe. There is nothing in existence that transcends man — his material organism within his material surroundings.”
The public (government) schools accomplished this for the so-called “progressives.” Parents willingly sent their children to the free public schools where they would be indoctrinated to love the State.
Gramsci wasn’t finished. After building their coalition “they must enter into every civil, cultural and political activity in every nation, patiently leavening them all as thoroughly as yeast leavens bread.”
To change the culture, Gramsci argued, “would require a ‘long march through the institutions’ — the arts, cinema, theater, schools, colleges, seminaries, newspapers, magazines, and the new electronic medium [of the time], radio.”
- Malachi Martin, The Keys of This Blood: The Struggle for World Dominion Between Pope John II, Mikhail Gorbachev and the Capitalist West (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1990), 245. [↩]
- Martin, The Keys of This Blood, 248. [↩]
- Martin, The Keys of This Blood, 249. [↩]
- Martin, The Keys of This Blood, 250. [↩]
- Martin, The Keys of This Blood, 251. [↩]
- Martin, The Keys of This Blood, 250. [↩]
- Patrick J. Buchanan, Death of the West: How Dying Populations and Immigrant Invasions Imperil Our Country and Civilization (New York: St. Martin’s Press/Thomas Dunne Books, 2001), 77. [↩]
Copyright (c) 2012 by Gary DeMar